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Spooky Surf: Art by Sean Bernhardt

An illustration of a surf skullIsland-Skulls, sharpie marker on paper

Artist Sean Bernhardt creates simple works of ink line art with a lighthearted, spooky surf aesthetic. Often using sharpie marker on paper, Sean’s works have an underground, street-art-esque feel that sits in contrast to the level of technical skill and thinking in each piece.

A drawing of a heart with text and surfPumping, Sharpie marker on paper


I really enjoy how cohesive Sean’s overall portfolio is. Though he works both in illustration, and collaged, mixed-media formats, the artist always adheres to a sunny, surf atmosphere, with a dark undertone that’s rarely forgotten. In his works of digital collage, Sean combines images that speak to a 1960’s beachside advertisement tone with land and seascape elements to create finished works that compare natural oceanic beauty to idealized and overtly sexual commercial imagery.

A screen capture of Sean Bernhardt's art

Classic horror elements like wolves and skulls feature prominently in the artist’s black and white illustrations, which makes for an invitingly campy atmosphere throughout Sean’s portfolio. As we discussed in our previous feature of Sean’s camp-horror aesthetic, these designs are especially at home on band posters and T-shirts.

A digital collage with photographic elementsSurfer's Suck, digital collage


About the author

Dallas Jeffs Art Writer

Dallas Jeffs is the Editor of Artist Run Website's blog. She is a recent graduate of Emily Carr University of Art and Design, where she studied Critical and Cultural Practices. She is passionate about talking and writing about art, and sharing that interest with others. In her studio practice she is a painter, but she considers herself an art writer and educator foremost. If you like art, books and culture with a science fiction twist, check out Dallas' personal blog, HappySpaceNoises

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